Historic Climate Change

Science Matters

My recent post The Coming Climate included a description of the orbital factors inducing natural cycles of warming and cooling far larger than any possible effect from CO2.

Yesterday commenter Alberto Zaragoza Comendador took this further into a discussion of the uncertainties in paleoclimatology. He started by referring to a paper by Lindzen, which focused on only one of these dynamics: fluxes of equator-to-pole heat transport.

Lindzen et al. 1993 concluded:
The present note shows the importance of aspects of the forcing which lead to changes in meridional (i.e., tropics to higher latitudes) heat fluxes. These aspects are seasonal, and involve the distribution of heating; they do not necessarily involve changes in globally and/or annually averaged insolation. Thus, simple, commonly used notions of climate sensitivity as employed in Houghton et al. (1990) are not relevant. Indeed, the present mechanism can readily produce major changes in climate (including, as a by product…

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